Baltimore, Md. — The Retriever volleyball team returns from their week off to face a pair of crucial America East matchups against Binghamton and Albany. UMBC dropped their last two matches against Stony Brook (3-0) and Hartford (3-1) a couple weeks back. The Retrievers are sitting at 10-13, 4-6 AE on the year. Both matches can be seen free of charge on UMBCRetrievers.tv, courtesy of the America East digital network.
Last Time Out:
UMBC dropped their last two matches back on October 31 (Stony Brook, 3-0) and November 2 (Hartford, 3-1). With the loses, UMBC fell to just 1-5 at the RAC this year.
Junior Sherelle Walker (New Freedom, Pa./Susquehannock) led the way with 19 kills over the two matches. Walker chipped in one assist and two blocks over the weekend. Junior Krystal Mlemchukwu (Baltimore, Md./Western Tech) and senior Hannah Schmidt (Catonsville, Md./Mount de Sales) each chipped in double digit kills for the Retrievers. Mlemchukwu poured in 13, while Schmidt added 12 winners and 11 digs.
Freshman Marissa Duncan (Ellicott City, Md./Mt. Hebron) had a career weekend. Duncan had five kills against Stony Brook, and then laid down another six against Hartford. Marissa helped on the defensive end as well, combining for five blocks on the weekend.
Scouting the Retrievers (10-13, 4-6 AEC):
UMBC comes into the matches at 10-13, 4-6 AE on the year, having lost their last two matches against Stony Brook (October 31, 3-0) and Hartford (November 2, 3-1). The Retrievers are just 1-5 in home games this year.
Junior Krystal Mlemchukwu leads the team with 234 kills, good for 3.00 a set. Schmidt is a close second with 192 kills, good for a 2.31 clip.
Junior Paige Miller (Reading, Pa./Schuylkill Valley) paces the squad with 758 assists on the year. Miller sits in fifth in the conference with 9.13 assists per set.
Welcome to the Club Hannah:
Senior outside hitter Hannah Schmidt (Catonsville, Md./Mount de Sales) climbed into eighth in all-time kills with 1,030, following her 12 kills this past weekend. She trails UMBC great Rehena Rentuma by 34 for seventh place. Hannah also recorded her 1,000th kill against Binghamton back on October 19, becoming just the eighth Retriever all time to do so. Schmidt also sits in seventh place in career attempts with 3,044. She is just 128 away from sixth place.
The Retrievers have played 17 of their 23 matches this season away from the friendly confines of the RAC. In those 17 games (ten away, seven neutral), UMBC is a combined 9-8 (5-5 away, 4-3 neutral). The Retrievers will finish up the year with six of their final ten matches coming at home.
During the non-conference portion of the schedule, the Retrievers traveled over 9,000 miles between all 11 matches away from the RAC. UMBC traveled to UMES for the Hawks Hullabaloo Tournament to open the season, before heading to the Rocky Mountains to take part in the BYU Tournament in Provo, Utah. Most recently, the team went to the Arizona desert to participate in the Wildcat Classic and finished up the road swing at Howard.
UMBC has taken on three teams that were nationally ranked so far this year. The Retrievers played then No. 12 BYU and No. 3 Washington at the BYU Invitational before taking on No. 15 Arizona at the Wildcat Classic.
Scouting the Bearcats (8-18, 6-5 AEC):
Binghamton comes into the matchup with the Retrievers at 8-18 overall and 6-5 AE on the year. The Bearcats dropped a pair of America East matches to Stony Brook (3-1) and Hartford (3-2). BU is 4-8 on the year away from Vestal this season, and 4-2 at home.
Allison Hovie and Megan Burgess lead the charge offensively for the Bearcats. Hovie has laid down 242 kills this year (3.18 per set), while Burgess has 241 (2.56 per set) this year. Hovie and Burgess are two of four Bearcats with over 200 kills on the year. Alexis Lagoy (219) and Kristin Hovie (209) are the other two.
Amanda Dettmann sets up the offense for the Bearcats. Dettmann has 926 helpers on the year, good for fourth in the conference at a 9.26 per set clip.
This will be the 29th all-time meeting between the two schools. Binghamton holds a slim 17-11 advantage over the Retrievers, including a 3-0 win earlier in October up in New York. However, UMBC has won the previous four matches played at the RAC, dating back to 2010.
Scouting the Great Danes (8-15, 6-5 AEC):
Albany heads into the Sunday matinee at 8-15 overall and 6-5 in conference. The Great Danes are coming off a 3-1 win at Hartford on November 7, before falling to Stony Brook, 3-1 on November 9. Albany currently sits in third place in the America East standings, as the conference heads into the final weekend of the year.
Laini Leindecker leads the attack for the Great Danes with 296 kills (3.22 per set/2nd in America East). Opposite of Leindecker is Amanda Dolan, who also has over 200 kills this year. Dolan has laid down 202 winners, good for a 2.20 clip.
Mikala McCauley is the main setter for the Great Danes' attack. McCauley has 752 helpers this year, good for an 8.17 clip. She has also chipped in 50 kills, and 17 service aces for Albany.
The Great Danes hold a commanding 22-7 lead in the all-time series against UMBC. However, the Retrievers have had the Great Danes number lately, winning the previous five matchups including a 3-2 win earlier this year.